Parents seeking tutors for their kids challenged with ‘COVID slide’


CAPITAL REGION, N.Y. (NEWS10) — As schools continue to shift to remote learning, even on a temporary basis, some parents are now seeking extra help with their children’s education in the form of tutoring.

Even before the start of the school year some districts in the Capital Region — most of them citing budget shortfalls — opted to go virtual. But now, with coronavirus cases on the rise, districts that began in-person are temporarily shifting to remote learning.

And while teachers are doing their very best, some parents are turning to tutors for extra help.

“Schools are doing the best they can under very difficult circumstances, but a lot of these students they need independent help beyond that.”

Scott Coughlan is the Executive Director of Huntington Learning Center in Clifton Park. The company offers in-person and online tutoring.

“A lot of parents are really concerned about how much their children lost in learning last spring,” said Coughlan.

That lag in learning is better known as the “COVID Slide.”

“And we have programs that are designed to help students get caught up when there are skill gaps, which is the situation right now.”

“I have seen students lose confidence and flounder.”

That’s Patrick McNamara. He is the owner and center director of Sylvan Learning Centers of Albany and Clifton Park.

While Sylvan offers both in-person and online tutoring, he says some students are seeking a break from the virtual world.

“They say, ‘Well, we want something to happen that’s in-person’. And because we can limit the number of kids that are here those parents are finding us as a solution.”

He says he expects to receive more calls as more schools likely shift to remote learning.

“And the parents begin to realize that this is not temporary, and it’s not getting better, and it’s not the teachers’ fault, that they need to try something else that’s supplemental.”

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